SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- MGM Springfield announced today that they will layoff one-thousand employees come Monday. The decision is part of the 18,000 jobs MGM is cutting nationwide.

The announcement comes as the City of Springfield just marked the casino's second anniversary earlier this week. People Western Mass News spoke to tonight said the news is disheartening.

“That will be hard for the people that work because maybe they don't have money to buy food. If they have little kids it will be hard for them," said Springfield resident Glorimar Maldonado.

Maldonado reflects on how 1,000 employees at MGM Springfield will be laid off by next week...

Western Mass News learned on Friday that MGM Resorts is laying off 18,000 workers across the company, 1,000 of them from Springfield. Some said the casino brings life to Springfield, and now the cuts are disappointing news.

“I think it's sad. We were hoping that the casino was going to revitalize the city. So we're hoping that they're going to have a vaccine or something. Where we can get back to the new normal, but open up the city again," said Springfield resident Veronica Dearden.

Dearden said she remembers the city before the casino first opened.

"But it was a ghost town, and when the casino opened, it brought people in. Now because you have to social distance and [wear a] face mask, [now] a lot of people don't want to go out. A lot of people are afraid to go out," she noted.

Dearden questions if MGM Springfield can survive with 1,000 of its workers unemployed.

"Not for very long, I don't think," she said. "But MGM is a good backer. So I think they'll hang in there for a little bit.”

One economics professor told Western Mass News he thinks the casino will still be here post-pandemic.

"I think it will stay open. It's backed by a major corporation. The CEO here is pretty optimistic," said American International College Economics Professor John Rogers.

MGM Springfield has extended health benefits for the laid-off workers until September 30 they said they will also reach out to laid-off employees for jobs when things return to normal.

Copyright 2020 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation).  All rights reserved.

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